[Review] ‘Mandao of the Dead’ Packs Heart and Humor into a Small Package

Doing horror comedy is a difficult balancing act.  It’s easy to lose your way and wind up with a zany mess that deals exclusively in juvenile humor.  If it goes the other way you can wind up with an unfunny dry mess.  However, when done right, a horror premise can make for an excellent backdrop […]

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Netflix’s Reboot of “Unsolved Mysteries” Promises to “Maintain the Chilling Feeling” of the Original

Shortly after a rumor began to spread around the net, Netflix officially confirmed last week that they’re bringing back the ’90s series “Unsolved Mysteries, which was originally hosted by the late Robert Stack. The mystery docuseries is being revived by the original creators (Cosgrove/Meurer Productions) along with the producers of “Stranger Things” (21 Laps).

Netflix promises in an official statement…

This modern take on the classic series will maintain the chilling feeling viewers loved about the original, while also telling the stories through the lens of a premium Netflix documentary series. Each episode will focus on one mystery and once again will look to viewers to help aid investigators in closing the book on long outstanding cases.

Additionally, we’ve learned that Netflix has ordered up 12 episodes.

The reboot uses re-enactments and interviews to retell the circumstances of, well, mysteries that are unsolved. Covering crimes, tales of lost love, unexplained history and paranormal events, viewers are encouraged to call in with information that might solve the mystery.

Terry Dunn Meurer is showrunning this all-new version of the show she co-created with fellow EP John Cosgrove. Shawn Levy and Josh Barry are exec producing for 21 Laps.

MUSE Review – A Poetic And Heartfelt Story Of Horror In The South Of France

Starring Jeffrey Charles Richards, Emily Price, Lowri Watts-Joyce, Nicholas Ball

Directed by Richard John Taylor

Muse is a difficult film to describe, mainly because it goes out of its way to make the viewer question the reality of the world it presents to them. You’ll be asking a lot of time the end credits role, so this is definitely a film which will stay on your mind for years to come.

Harry is a successful writer who, while grieving the loss of his daughter Ethel, decides to spend time in a rural country house deep in the South of France. While he’s there, he meets a young woman named Elouise who bares an incredible resemblance to his recently deceased daughter, something he gradually finds too much to bear.

There’s not much else which can be said about the plot because, truth be told, not much else happens. Harry and Elouise bond and begin to develop a deep friendship, while her resemblance to Elouise slowly starts to drive Harry insane. The stunning natural beauty of the South of France creates a stark contrast with the darkness in Harry’s mind, helping to make this a story which will truly get under your skin (and that’s meant as a compliment).

lthough you haven’t heard his name before, Jeffrey Charles Richards is an actor who deserves to be on the radar. While he’s probably too old to become the next big thing in Hollywood, his impressive performance in Muse should help him maintain a steady supply of roles after the film hits the festival circuit. As a writer struggling to accept the loss of his daughter while also slowly losing his grip on reality, Richards delivers a performance which is both stirring and heartbreaking, with the use of long interrupted shots at times making you feel like you are staring into his soul. When he is told of his daughter’s death, Harry responds by saying that he had a cop friend who referred to delivering news of death to a family as a ‘deathogram’. You won’t know whether to laugh or cry.

Also fantastic in her feature debut was Emily Price as Ethel/Elouise, presenting a portrait of a young woman who begins to develop a deep connection with Harry, but may also be hiding her own inner demons. Elouise dreams of being an actress and has youth and talent on her side, but as Harry tells her, “youth is wasted on the young.”

The majority of Muse takes place within Harry’s large house and the surrounding gardens, so by limiting how much we see of the real world, director Richard John Taylor effortlessly creates a sense of claustrophobia, which works to strengthen the feelings of desperation and isolation which Harry is clearly experiencing. As mentioned above, Taylor also makes use of long, uninterrupted handheld shots which get so shaky at times that you’ll probably start to feel seasick. The soundtrack, which mostly consists of operatic singing in a language you won’t understand, makes Muse almost seem like an avant-garde picture, which may be what Taylor was going for.

But either way, this is definitely a slow burning and largely uneventful story, which may turn off those who prefer a high body count in their horror, but if you have enough patience to get to the end, you’ll find Muse to be one of the most powerful and though provoking horror films in recent memory. Definitely be sure to catch this at the first available opportunity.

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Images Share Look at ‘John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum’ Characters

Keanu Reeves returns as the title character in the Chad Stahelski-directed John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum, as does Winston (Ian McShane) and Charon (Laurence Fishburne), but there are also a handful of newbies. Lionsgate shared with Bloody the full batch of images (some old and some new) that reveal most of the cast, including Halle Berry‘s Sophia, described as “a woman on a mission”, and Anjelica Huston as The Director, a member of the High Table of The Continental.

In the third installment…

“John Wick (Reeves) is on the run for two reasons… he’s being hunted for a global $14 million dollar open contract on his life, and for breaking a central rule: taking a life on Continental Hotel grounds. The victim was a member of the High Table who ordered the open contract. John should have already been executed, except the Continental’s manager, Winston, has given him a one-hour grace period before he’s “Excommunicado” – membership revoked, banned from all services and cut off from other members. John uses the service industry to stay alive as he fights and kills his way out of New York City.”

John Wick returns on May 17, 2019.

Anjelica Huston as The Director, a member of the High Table of The Continental

John (Keanu Reeves) and Sofia (Halle Berry)

John (Keanu Reeves) and Sofia (Halle Berry)

Sofia (Halle Berry)

Winston (Ian McShane) and Charon (Laurence Fishburne)

Dario Argento Says He’s “Meeting With the Writers” About a New Movie He’s Directing

The legendary master of horror Dario Argento recently took part in a chat with Radio Rai 1’s Un Giorno da Pecora, wherein he revealed that he’s not a fan of Luca Guadagnino’s remake of Suspiria. “It betrayed the spirit of the original film,” Argento noted during the interview, holding nothing back. But that’s not the only interesting thing he said during the chat.

Argento also revealed in the very same interview that he’s working on a new movie, and that he’s soon meeting with the writers to discuss the project. He noted that the title originally chosen for the film was one that he did not approve of, so it currently does not have a title.

The most recent film Dario Argento directed was Dracula 3D in 2012, and it was back in 2017 that Argento first talked about a new movie being written for him to direct.

We had no details then, and we still have none at this time.

Grey Matter Art Unveils THE EXORCIST Limited Edition Screen Print by Artist Sara Deck

After conjuring up eerie artwork for the new Suspiria movie, artist Sara Deck has now turned her talents to The Exorcist, capturing the iconic possession of Regan MacNeil (Linda Blair) that has burned brightly in the psyches of viewers for decades. A screen print that would look right at home watching over horror fans from their living room walls, Deck’s new Exorcist screen print has been unveiled by Grey Matter Art, and they’ve provided us with release details and images of the limited edition artwork that features Regan hovering like a fallen angel in unholy light. 

“Grey Matter Art, in release with Bottleneck Gallery is proud to present, a new limited edition screen print for the classic 1973 American supernatural horror film, “The Exorcist” by the very talented artist, Sara Deck. Sara’s style lends itself so well to these classic horror films, and this poster is a perfect example, showcasing Linda Blair’s character, Regan MacNeil in her most demonic form.

“The Exorcist” Goes On Sale Tuesday, January 22nd at 12 PM est!

Regular Edition of 125/$50.00

Variant Edition of 50/$60.00

“The Exorcist” by Sara Deck
24″ x 36″ hand-numbered screen print
Regular Edition of 125/$50.00
Variant Edition of 50/$60.00
Printed by VG Kids

“The Exorcist” will be released on Tuesday, January 22nd at 12 PM (est). on the GMA site and Bottleneck Gallery.

For all updates and information, please follow GMA on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.”

Regular Edition:

Variant Edition:

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Interview: Tony Todd Sets the Record Straight on Unmade CANDYMAN VS LEPRECHAUN Crossover

When it comes to horror icon Tony Todd, all conversations
start and end with Candyman—and for good reason. Candyman was and is
important, both cinematically and culturally (as we’ll discuss later in this
article); also, we recently received a new, definitive re-release of 1992’s Candyman
via Arrow Video. Then there’s the fact that Oscar winner Jordan Peele is
rebooting Candyman with a set release date in June of 2020.

But Todd was in another excellent film recently; Hell
was a surprise horror hit in 2018 and the movie is now available
to own on Digital HD and Blu-ray/DVD. Though the actor’s role was small, he
made an incredible impression. Hell Fest represents the actor’s
most impressive work since the Hatchet and Final Destination

Dread Central had the honor of sitting down with Todd recently.
Of course, we spent considerable time talking about the enduring legacy of Candyman
(even addressing those Candyman vs Leprechaun crossover
rumors), but we also discussed representations of minorities in media and ended
our conversation with Hell Fest.

And just before our meeting ended, we even got an update on
the Nazi zombie/flying sharks movie Sky Shark, which was scheduled for a
2017 release before pretty much dropping off the face of the Earth. Will we
ever get to see the irreverent mayhem? Read on to find out!

Hell Fest Synopsis:
On Halloween night, three young women and their respective boyfriends head to Hell Fest — a ghoulish traveling carnival that features a labyrinth of rides, games, and mazes. They soon face a bloody night of terror when a masked serial killer turns the horror theme park into his own personal playground.

Dread Central: Candyman is enjoying a return to the limelight following a new, definitive release from Arrow video plus news that Jordan Peele is producing a remake slated for 2020. How do you feel about the fact that the character you made iconic has endured for over tw and a half decades and is still relevant and scary in the 21st century?

Tony Todd: It’s a
fantastic occurrence for me that I never could have imagined. Most films have a
shelf life of maybe one or two years. But I think that with horror films in particular,
once they click with fans, they never let them go. So, I’m honored that, A:
Someone would want to bring Candyman
back and, B: That someone of Jordan Peele’s caliber wants to produce it. That’s
extraordinary and I think it’s going to be a great boon for horror fans and for
Candyman fans worldwide.

DC: Fantastic! Will
you be involved in the reboot?

TT: No one has reached
out to us yet, but I can’t imagine that I won’t be a part of it.

DC: I don’t think
fans can imagine it without you participating in some capacity as well. You
really deserve to be a part of this.

TT: What will be will
be. Even if I’m not involved in it (God forbid), it will draw attention back to
the original Candyman so it’s really
a win-win situation no matter what happens. I love the character and I know it’s
in good hands and I just want it to continue the legacy of the original.

DC: Back in 2016,
Bernard Rose was on an episode of The Movie Crypt podcast where he claimed
that, following the success of Freddy vs
, someone pitched a Candyman vs
movie since the same studios owned the rights to both
franchises. Rose claims they were seriously considering it until you personally
shot the deal down. The story has become something of an urban legend, which is
ironic since Candyman is about urban
legends. Can you tell us what you recall about the situation?

TT: Absolutely! This
was right around the time of Freddy vs
and [Candyman vs Leprechaun] did come across my desk. I saw it and I said, “I will never be involved in
something like that.” I respect the character. Once a horror character becomes
something of an icon [like Candyman], reluctantly or not, you have to treat
that with respect that. I remember watching Abbott and Costello vs Frankenstein continuously as a kid and being
amazed that my horror legends were making a comedy. So, I guess there are some
ways to make something like that work, but I wasn’t interested in doing that
with Candyman.

DC: We also heard
there was going to be a Candyman 4 at
one point with a plot that centered on an all-girls school in New England and a
professor who doesn’t know she’s related to Daniel Robatille [aka Candyman].
What happened there?

TT: That was actually
an idea I had pitched. One reason it never came together is because there were
three owners of the Candyman
franchise at that time, and for some reason, they couldn’t all get on the same
page. So now, I guess the smoke has cleared and people see a way to make money so
people are signing off on it. Plus, I think Jordan Peele’s track record also
helps. But I’m glad that they’ve announced a specific release date (June 21st,
2020), which happens to be the birthday of my aunt who raised me, so it all
feel really good.

DC: That definitely sounds
cosmic—like an extremely good omen.

TT: I believe in that
path. I’ve learned how to let things go. I’ve lost roles I really wanted; I’ve
lost roles because I was involved in other projects, and I’m pretty loyal. You
mentioned [before the interview] that you saw Candyman when you were back in college. I’ve been at this for
almost three decades now. And it hasn’t dried up. Every year, things become
more concrete. So, I’m in a good place. 2018 was a terrific year for horror. We
had the Halloween remake which was a
hit both creatively and critically, and that was good. Then there was A Quite Place and Hereditary—a lot of good work this year. And I think 2019 is going
to be even better.

DC: And hopefully
that trend will continue into 2020 with the Candyman

TT: Absolutely.

DC: I wanted to get kind of serious for a minute: Candyman is important for many reasons, but, at least as far as I can recall, the character was the first African American horror villain (who wasn’t a parody, like Blackula); not only that, he was scary but also seductive and sexy. While African Americans have often been cast as criminals and thugs, even today, Candyman remains the only truly iconic Black horror villain. Why is it so easy for Hollywood to cast African Americans as criminals but not slashers?

TT: I don’t know,
maybe it’s part of a deep-rooted fear of seeing something that could really
happen on a national level. But I think now is a good time to examine these
issues. With all the things that are going on politically in our country, the
division. If Candyman is a product
of division, and a product of not being not being accepted by a specific group
of people, the timing is better than ever.

When [Candyman director and screenwriter] Bernard Rose did his adaptation from Clive Barker’s short story, The Forbidden, he hit a stroke of genius by setting it in Chicago. It’s not only one of our most iconic American cities, but there’s a long history of criminality, from bootlegging to underground black markets. And it’s still going on: Chicago’s homicide rates are outrageous. And I think they’re going to keep the reboot in Chicago, so I think they might explore the whole gentrification anglebecause Cabrini–Green is no longer there; it only exists beneath the surface. So, that what I’m hoping for. I can’t wait to take a look at the script!

DC: As far as racial equality and accurate representations of African Americans in the media goes, do you see things improving?

TT: It’s certainly gotten better over time. My first film was Platoon, released in 1986, so I really hit the ground running. Everybody in that film was placed on a certain list. But I remember being the only African American, or even person of color, on set, and we’re talking over 100 people. The first decade for me acting, I would show up and it was like being alone; like I was working in a cultural echo chamber. But lately, in the last couple years, I’ve shot five projects in Atlanta, and the Atlanta workforce is a more accurate reflection of America’s cultural diversity. You’ve got people of all colors and nationalities on both sides of the camera, which is fantastic. This is a Dream Factory that we work in and everyone should be allowed to at least taste the dream.

DC: Hell Fest surprised a lot of folks in
2018, not just because it came out of nowhere, but because it was really damn

TT: I was great! I had
a ball working on it. It had a great young cast who weren’t just cookie-cutter teenagers.
We really get to know them and their unique, individual situations. And my
character was kind of like a mash-up of iconic, rock and roll performers.

DC: Anything else you want to tell our readers before I let you go?

TT: I’m a big fam
Dread Central; you guys have always been so good to me. We do have a new film
coming out this year called The Final
and another one called Immortal
which is one of those films that posits the question: What happens in a
relationship if one person can never die? So, we’ve got those two films and a
couple pilots I’ve signed on to. I’m really excited for this year.

DC: You just reminded
me: What ever happened to Sky Shark?
The trailers for that film are just nuts and we were looking forward to seeing
you as Major General Frost. Will we ever see it?

TT: I got pulled into
that at a German horror convention where they were just grabbing everyone who
showed up and putting them in these scenes. This was during the Sharknado craze, so we’ll see what
happens there.

DC: Well now, Overlord just made Nazi zombies cool, so mash them up into a Sharknado and I say, “Bring it on!”

TT: I get to say, “Let’s slay this motherfucking catfish!”

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McFarlane Toys Relaunching “McFarlane’s Monsters” With “Game of Thrones” Drogon Figure!

Late last year, Todd McFarlane had noted that he was looking to bring McFarlane Toys back to its roots, teasing the potential revival of the “Movie Maniacs” and “Clive Barker’s Tortured Souls” toy lines. McFarlane announced during NYCC, “So what we’re gonna do is, when we started McFarlane Toys twenty-plus years ago, we were built on the detailed stuff, doing all these cool monsters and all this sort of wicked stuff. We’re gonna go back to our origins.

Making good on that promise, ToyArk notes today that an upcoming deluxe figure of Drogon from “Game of Thrones” will relaunch/be part of the “McFarlane’s Monsters” toy line!

The “McFarlane’s Monsters” brand originally launched back in the late 1990s, an umbrella under which the company released all kinds of crazy cool monster toys. It all began with playsets based on the classic Universal Monsters characters, and grew to include fan favorites like “Twisted Christmas,” “Twisted Land of Oz” and “Twisted Fairy Tales.”

Now that’s the McFarlane Toys we fell in love with!

Middle of Beyond’s New Button-Up Shirts Include PLANET OF THE APES and GHOSTBUSTERS

For years, Middle of Beyond’s amazing horror apparel has been featured in Heather Wixson’s Holiday Gift Guides, and with the holiday season now in the rearview mirror, they’re kicking off the new year with new button-up shirts featuring Ghostbusters, Planet of the Apes, and an ode to Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining.

Priced at $55 apiece, the Ghostbusters, Planet of the Apes, and “The Hotel” shirts are 100% cotton, feature prints on all sections of the shirt, and come with a chest pocket and button.

You can check out the new shirts below, and be sure to visit Middle of Beyond’s official website for more information.

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Christine McConnell Just Made This Kickass ‘Mortal Kombat’ Cake

Last week was a big one for Mortal Kombat fans, as the official reveal for this year’s Mortal Kombat 11 gave us our first real good taste of what we can expect from the new game. And speaking of tasting Mortal Kombat, cake master/Netflix star Christine McConnell even whipped up her very own Mortal Kombat cake in celebration of the big reveal!

McConnell is of course the star of “The Curious Creations of Christine McConnell,” which hit Netflix last year. No word yet on whether or not the streaming service will be ordering up a second season, but in the meantime, McConnell continues to create jaw-dropping cakes.

She tweeted the other day, sharing photos of her brand new Mortal Kombat Kake, “The exterior is sheets of chocolate that I hand painted to look like the original arcade game.”

For more, be sure to follow Christine McConnell on Twitter!